Around four or five years ago, when LeBron was beginning his dominance of the Eastern Conference, I was sick of the guy. I was sick of how ESPN slurped him up at every single moment and how no one would address that he wasn’t that clutch.
Now, I try and silence LeBron haters at every chance I get. I love that the major sports networks and personalities slurp him up. I love how much he’s appreciated, because it’s wrong to hate on the greats when we should be appreciating them.
If you didn’t know, LeBron is likely to finish his career as the all-time leader in minutes, and points, and will be the playoff leader in nearly every statistical category. LeBron has single-handedly led the first-ever comeback from a 3-1 deficit in the NBA Finals, and he’s likely to end up with at least four championships on his resume.
Now, I think LeBron will be the greatest player of all time, if he hasn’t hit that mark already. The argument is dead, it’s over. As an ALL AROUND BASKETBALL PLAYER, there has never been one that can lead a game in every category like LBJ. If I’m picking one player to score a basket if my life depended on it, it’s Michael Jordan. If I need one player to lead my team on the fast break, it’s Magic. If I need one player to make the clutch overall play, it’s Larry Legend. But, if I need one player to go out and dominate the game and get a win, leading in multiple categories and controlling the overall feel of the game, it’s LeBron. It will always be LeBron.
Not only does he have the tangible resume that will solidify him as the greatest ever, he also has the intangibles that everyone wants to see. I also think that he has had to endure more criticism, more bad teammates, more sorry coaches, and higher expectations than anyone else in the history of the league. He’s been the “Chosen One” since he arrived, and he’s delivered in nearly every way.
I’ll say, the 2011 Finals were a disaster and he froze. But, have we ever seen someone come back with more of a vengeance? LeBron has been to the Finals every year since, winning three, including one against arguably the best team in the history of the league. He’s put up more playoff triple-doubles than anyone and he’s made everyone on the court better.
I just think we all need to take a minute and realize how lucky we are to get to watch LeBron James. He’s an inspiration to young players everywhere on how to play the game right and handle business off the court in the right way. He’s truly my favorite athlete of all time, and I feel that it’s time he gets the respect that he’s earned, especially if (and when) he wins the title this year.